Friday, September 23, 2011

Happy Fall!

It's pretty fitting that this would be my 100th post.  
I really love living where I can experience all of the seasons, 
but Fall knows that she's my favorite. ;)
To celebrate my 100th post, I believe I will have to do a giveaway very soon...

     My school year is off to a great start.  I have a small class with fun, eager learners.  We are having a great time getting to know one another.  My favorite memory so far (and definitely in my top 3 memories of teaching to date) happened last week.  I am not a teacher who gives a lot of homework.  We pretty much work from the minute they come in until it's time to go home.  I explain to the students that the way I look at it is if they will give their 100% during the day, they have earned some fresh air and exercise and time to relax at night.  
     Well, last week on Monday we had worked really hard the whole day.  We had stopped to go to Library and lunch and the rest was work time.  It was ten minutes til 2:00 and I started to switch activities when I glanced out the window.  The sky was blue with big puffy clouds -it was gorgeous out there.  I started to say, "Let's take out our Social Studies books," but I hesitated.  I said, "I think we should...  Right now, I think we should... go outside for 10 minutes."
     One of the boys in the back of the room says, "Whoa!  I did not even see that one coming!"  Straight face, just absolutely amazed at this turn of events.
     I loved that moment and will treasure it forever.  And it might just make me go outside for ten minutes a few more times this year, too. :)

I have won two more giveaways in the last couple of weeks!  And I got a surprise package from a blog friend.  Blessings from blog land.  Treasures all.  I will share pictures this weekend, hopefully.  Right now, I have to get ready for one more day of learning.  

I hope everyone has a wonderful first day of Fall!!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

My Book Corner

In my last post I said that I was pretty happy about my book corner at school.  Here's why.
Here's my book corner.  I need to paint the back of the two
book cases on the left.  That will have to happen on a weekend
when it's a bit less humid so the paint will dry before kids touch it.
The quilt on the table was a gift from a student last year.
I love how colorful it is.
I started using a system for my book corner last year where each book has a number and there are bins that are labeled with that number so the kids always know where to put the book when they are done.  I got the idea from the 2 Sisters.   It worked great last year, but it took A LOT of time to set up.  My husband spent 2-3 days at school helping me and we still had 3 big bins of pictures books left that weren't sorted.  I never got them done last year, but this year I was determined - and I did it!!  Now there's a place for everything and everything is in its place.  

My husband is a very good sport about the amount
of money I have spent on books for my classroom.
In fact his halo is glowing in that department

Mark hung the gutters for me to display books in a couple of years ago.  I tell the kids that this is how book stores sell the most books - by showing the front cover and getting our attention.  It's a fun way to display seasonal and holiday books, too.

I am ready and excited for the students to arrive tomorrow.  It's going to be another great year!

P.S. This was my 99th post!  Holy guacamole!

Monday, September 5, 2011

I must be getting excited...

I can't sleep.  It's 2:00 a.m. and I haven't been asleep yet.  I keep thinking about school starting, and meeting my new class, and things I want to do, and well, I can't sleep.  So I'll do a little blog post and then try to rest again.

I finished painting my $2.00 oil painting frame, and I am really happy with it.  It's the first time I tried this technique and it turned out pretty good I think.  Wendy was the first to suggest this idea when I asked for ideas a couple of posts ago, so thanks, Wendy - and Dee and Annie for backing her up!  I liked the sound of the stain idea that you other folks suggested, so I have that on stand-by for my next project.  So thank you to everyone, really - I was so appreciative that people gave such great ideas.

Here's a close-up of what it looks like now:

I hung it up at school and I love it there right by the door to my classroom.

The squares on the door will have pictures of the students as soon as I can get them taken and printed.  I have done that for the past several years and the kiddos all love looking at them.

My classroom is about 90% ready.  I have two cupboards I would still like to clean and organize but that might have to wait - the students start on Wednesday!  One thing I did accomplish that I am very happy about is finally sorting all of my books.  I'll take pictures of that and share it later.  I'm pretty proud of it to tell the truth. :)  I think you'll understand when you see the pictures...

Mark took me for a little day trip get-away last Wednesday and we went to Presque Isle near Erie, PA.  What a lovely, lovely spot to spend a day (or longer).  It is a Pennsylvania State Park location, and it is really clean, with lots of walking (or bike riding) paths to go on, as well as a nice stretch of beach.  That's where we spent most of our time - walking and collecting little beach rocks.  The PA schools are back in session, so it was pretty quiet when we were there.  Here are some shots of what we saw while we were there:

I think there were three lighthouses you can see on the island.
This one you could see from the road  and also from the beach.
We walked up to the fence to get this picture.
There were several markers for the historical sites in the park.
I loved this one because I wanted to know
why Mr. McAllister only lasted 8 days.
There is a welcome center which we didn't visit.
I'll bet I can find a book that tells me.  Next time...
Nice stretch of beach for walking.
As you can see it was an overcast day,
which made it very comfortable for strolling.

We loved this little cove/inlet section where there were several houseboats.
You can only get to your houseboat by boat.  Loved that.
Mark wanted a picture of us.
I will never be a glamorous person.  Sigh.
Well, maybe I can sleep a little if I try again now.
I hope you all have a wonderful Labor Day and start to September.  Cooler temperatures are on the way to Western New York which means it's definitely time to start my Fall decorating.  I had to laugh because today Mark looked up at the fireplace mantle and said, "I like what you have going there."  (It's all patriotic themed stuff.)  Well gee, it's been like that for most of the summer and I'm about to change the whole thing so thanks?  Cracked me up.  At least he noticed at all, right?  ;)
Have a great day wherever you are!

Saturday, September 3, 2011

A Blog Hop That is Coming Soon

Happy Labor Day weekend!  I hope you have plans that involve fun, food, family, and friends.  We haven't made any serious plans yet.  We are both working today and maybe tomorrow.  But I did buy chips and dip.  Pitiful, I know, but it's a start.

I have been busy getting my classroom ready, and will be continuing on that mission today.  I do have some other (not school) things to share - hopefully tomorrow.  I painted the frame from the oil painting I shared in a recent post and I really like it now.  Have to reassemble it before I can get a picture.

For now, I just thought I'd share this blog hop that I stumbled upon yesterday.  It's starting next week, and I think it will be a good one for fabric lovers.  It is sponsored by Moda and 27 of their fabric designers will be sharing a FREE project on their day of the hop.

I am getting really close to a 100th post!  I couldn't believe that when I saw it.  I think I'll do some kind of giveaway when I hit that magic number.  
I'll let you know what it is when I know what it is.  :)
Have a great day!